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Can anyone shed some light on why this is happening?
Yes. You :) Use Devel::Peek on $arg in the subroutine before and after you assign to it. Eg:
With the rise and rise of 'Social' network sites: 'Computers are making people easier to use everyday'
Examine what is said, not who speaks -- Silence betokens consent -- Love the truth but pardon error.
"Science is about questioning the status quo. Questioning authority".
In the absence of evidence, opinion is indistinguishable from prejudice.
In reply to Re: Mystery state (possibly about whether an argument is numeric?) being maintained across calls to a sub